What’s up everybody, Paul Hickey here with Data Driven Design. Businesses ask me all the time, “what can I do to differentiate myself and drive customers?"

I’ve got a perfect example for you: Carmen Johnston Gardens, a landscape designer in Georgia, built an Alexa Skill with Data Driven Design. “Alexa, launch Carmen Johnston Gardens.”

Here she is on NewsChannel5 in Nashville showcasing this. This is happening right now. Your business needs Voice.

Check it out, and thank you to Voiceflow, the tool I used to build this Alexa Skill.

I met Carmen at VoiceCon by VaynerMedia in 2018, and since then we’ve formed a tight business partnership that includes her company hiring my company to support on all things digital strategy.

At our Nashville Voice Conference inaugural event in 2019, Carmen pulled me aside and told me that her audience needs a way to watch her “how-to” home and garden tips without getting their dirty, messy, greasy kitchen/garden hands on their phone/tablet, etc.

Enter, the multimodal Alexa Skill that features video (and audio) tips from Carmen.

But we didn’t stop at just launching her Alexa Skill. We’ve teamed up to create a marketing force that includes using the fact that she has become the first in the Gardening category to launch technology like this to garner her business massive attention on mainstream media.

In short, Carmen is the perfect example of a Business Owner who knows how to differentiate herself from the competition, create her own story and get attention for the right reasons, which drives customers to her business.

She’s not sitting around finding reasons NOT to build Voice Apps. She’s executing a fully integrated marketing strategy that includes Voice Apps as a way of differentiating herself and creating stories like this one.

Would an Alexa Skill by itself make the news like this? Probably Not. But would Carmen have made the news like this without the technology that makes her different? You decide. Enjoy.

And keep marketing.

FULL TRANSCRIPTION (from Talk of the Town on NewsChannel5):

Noell Jett from Jettset Farmhouse (in B-roll): Alexa, launch Carmen Johnston Gardens.

Alexa Responds (in Carmen’s voice): How many of you want to have your own indoor garden inside your own bedroom?

NewsChannel5: Well, we loved her gardening tips in the pages of Southern Living, now Carmen Johnston is the first garden lifestyle expert with “how-to” videos (on Alexa). Her content (on her Alexa Skill) teaches you how to create centerpieces, planters and over 30 other useful green thumb ideas.

Carmen is here with this new technology and easy DIY for us. Great to see you!

Carmen: Oh, I’m so glad to be here and thank you so much for letting us show off our new Alexa Skill.

NewsChannel5: Yeah, this is pretty cool. You’re kind of pioneering this technology.

Carmen: We are. We’re the first one in the gardening category to be on Alexa, so we’ve got all kinds of useful gardening tips, decorating ideas, and especially tons of things for Easter coming up.

NewsChannel5: Okay, good, so show us how it works.

Carmen: Okay, let me take it off mute. Alexa, launch Carmen Johnston Gardens.

Alexa Responds (in Carmen’s Voice): Hi, I’m Carmen, I’d love to help you garden and entertain. Get started by saying Home and Garden, Holidays, Recipes or Follower Favorites.

Carmen: Alexa, go home. Okay, I’m sending her home real quick and putting her on mute because many of you in your home right now you might be hearing Alexa going off but I’ve got all kinds of fun tips and tricks and one of them is a DIY Terrarium that I wanted to show you and share with you today.

NewsChannel5: And so if you’re doing this with Alexa talking to you then, you’re talking us through all the steps!

Carmen: Yes! Literally, it’s like me standing right next to you in your kitchen. So, you know so many of us as your gardening right now, your hands are dirty and it’s really hard to touch the device and everything is getting yucky and messy. Well, now you can just talk to me, on Alexa, and I’ll show you all kinds of fun, different tips.

NewsChannel5: I love that. So neat. Carmen, thank you so much!

Carmen: Thank you so much for having me.

NewsChannel5: Congratulations on this new technology.

Carmen: We’re super excited, so be sure to (say Alexa,) launch Carmen Johnston Gardens

NewsChannel5: We will do it!

Thanks for reading, watching and listening, and have a great day!


Paul Hickey, Founder / CEO / Lead Strategist at Data Driven Design, LLC and founder of Nashville Voice Conference, has created and grown businesses via digital strategy and internet marketing for more than 15 years. His sweet spot is using analytics to design and build websites and grow the audience and revenue of businesses via SEO/Blogging, Google Adwords, Bing Ads, Facebook and Instagram Ads, Social Media Content Marketing, Email Marketing and most recently, Voice App Design and Development - Alexa Skills and Google Actions. The part that he’s most passionate about is quantifying next marketing actions based on real data.

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